Mystery of the Fourth Wall
- by Mary Zimmerman
- Review in theSan Francisco Chronicle (December
Home / Now
Playing & Coming Soon / Back to Media List
/ To email us
- "Fourth Wall' Steps Far Beyond Reality
- Curtain Calls
Bernard Weiner, San Francisco Chronicle
December 5, 1989
- Mary Zimmerman's "The Mystery of the Fourth Wall" - presented
by West Coast Playwrights at Exitheater, 366 Eddy Street, with her fellow
Chicago performance-artists - remains somewhat mysterious after its 90
minutes expire. And yet, it's an intriguing piece of theater.
- The script, which Zimmerman also directs, has something to do with
the Pygmalion myth, followed out over the centuries. In contemporary times,
the sculptor who would breathe life into his creation has become a phony
detective (Phillip R. Smith) trying to locate his missing model. The woman
(Laura Eason) is now an inmate, along with two companions (Tracy Walsh,
Emilie Beck) at a local sanitarium. The mystery is slowly unraveled by
a boring accountant (Tim Ereneta) who is mistaken for a detective and decides
to impersonate one when he falls in love with one of the women.
- I can't follow Zimmerman's script all that well - it appears to suggest
that women must realize that the sculptors who turn them to stone are the
sculptors inside themselves - but her staging is often exciting.
- The script constantly takes realism into another, weirder realm - what
the women dream, for example, often comes true when they're awake - and
Zimmerman's staging, in a modified Wooster Group-style, grabs us and holds
- The use of dance elements is often well handled - there's a beautiful
moment when Aphasia (the elegant Tracy Walsh) sits in a chair and a man
(Mark Brodie) then grabs the chair and whirls her off-stage.
- Still, "The Mystery of the Fourth Wall" is a welcome addition
of new blood to the Bay Area theater/performance art scene. It's at Exitheater
through December 10, 1989.
- Home / Now Playing & Coming Soon / Back to Media List / To